Terry Fox Run

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Terry Fox Run
2006 Terry Fox Run in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
GenreCancer fundraiser
FrequencyAnnually, second Sunday after Labour Day
Years active42 years
Inaugurated13 September 1981 (1981-09-13)
FounderTerry Fox
Next event17 September 2023

The Terry Fox Run is an annual non-competitive charity event held around the world to raise money for cancer research in commemoration of Canadian cancer activist Terry Fox and his Marathon of Hope.

The event was founded in 1981 by Isadore Sharp, who had contacted Terry in hospital by telegram and expressed his wishes to hold an annual run in Terry's name to raise funds for cancer research. Sharp had lost his son to cancer in 1979. The event is held every year on the second Sunday following Labour Day. Since its inception, it has raised via the 'Terry Fox Foundation' over $750 million (CAD).[1] The run is informal which means that the distance often varies, usually between 5 and 15 kilometres; participation is considered to be more important than completing the set distance. There are also runs set up by schools of every level, often with shorter distances than the "official" ones.

The Terry Fox Run has no corporate sponsorship, in accordance with Terry Fox's original wishes of not seeking fame or fortune from his endeavour. During his cross-Canada run, he rejected every endorsement he was offered (including from multinational corporations such as McDonald's), as he felt that it would detract from his goal of creating public awareness. The Terry Fox Runs have no advertisements on any race related materials (such as T-shirts, banners, etc.).


Terry Fox

The Terry Fox Foundation[2] was founded in 1988 after it separated from the Canadian Cancer Society. Since its inception, The Terry Fox Foundation has raised over $800 million for cancer research. Currently, Terry Fox Runs take place every year with many participants from all over the world. The Run is a volunteer led, all-inclusive, non-competitive event with no corporate sponsorship, incentives or fundraising minimums. Fox laid out these wishes before his death in 1981.

In 2007 The Terry Fox Foundation created the Terry Fox Research Institute[3] to conduct transnational research to significantly improve outcomes for cancer patients. In the fiscal year ending March 31, 2013, The Terry Fox Foundation directed $27.7 million to its cancer research programs.[4]

The Terry Fox Foundation has expanded beyond the traditional Run as well, by holding various other events. These events include National School Run Day,[5] where schools throughout Canada hold a Run to commemorate Fox and raise funds, and The Great Canadian Hair "Do",[6] which is a fundraising event that can take place at any time of the year. Participants are able to make the event as creative as they want— shave their heads, dye their hair a wacky colour, include a manly leg wax, and recruit friends to shave their heads as well.

Debuts by country[edit]

  • Canada -September 13, 1981, at 760 sites
  • Cuba - 1998. In 2005, over 1.9 million people used 3,600 sites. In 2006, it had around 2.6 million participants. The tenth run in 2007 had 4,652 sites and 2.267 million runners.
  • United States - 1990 in Bangor, Maine
  • Venezuela - 1998 at the Colegio Internactional de Caracas
A runner's tag for a Terry Fox Run in Milan, Italy in 2007
  • Bulgaria - 2013 and 2017 at the Anglo-American School of Sofia
  • Croatia - 2000[7][8]
  • Hungary - 1999, ended in 2005
  • Poland - 2006[9]
  • Portugal - 1994[10]
  • Spain - 2017
  • Oman - 2008[11]
  • Syria - 1991, ended after 2010 for civil war
A happy moment at the TFR 2014 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (2014)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Terry's Story". The Terry Fox Foundation. The Terry Fox Foundation. Retrieved 28 January 2018.
  2. ^ "A single dream, A world of hope". The Terry Fox Foundation.
  3. ^ "Terry Fox Research Institute - Home". Terry Fox Research Institute.
  4. ^ "Terry Fox Foundation Research". The Terry Fox Foundation.
  5. ^ "National School Run Day". The Terry Fox Foundation.
  6. ^ "Terry Fox Works". The Terry Fox Foundation.
  7. ^ ""Terry Fox Run" održat će se 17. rujna na Jarunu". PLIVA (in Croatian).
  8. ^ Jelavić, Boris (September 16, 2006). "Terry Fox Run maraton na Jarunu". StudentNet (in Croatian).
  9. ^ tvn.pl Archived October 14, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ Portugal :: Terry Fox Run
  11. ^ "Carrying on the legacy of Terry Fox". TAISM.
  12. ^ "Terry Fox Run Kuala Lumpur". Archived from the original on October 13, 2007.
  13. ^ "Terry Fox Run KL".
  14. ^ "Terry Fox Run kicks off today". The Freeman. October 8, 2005. Retrieved April 12, 2012.
  15. ^ "Bangkok's Eleventh Annual Terry Fox Run for Cancer Research to be held 30 October 2005". Retrieved September 14, 2011.
  16. ^ "18th Annual Terry Fox Run 2014 In HCMC". Archived from the original on November 28, 2014.

External links[edit]